Indian government is planning global campaign to promote India with Oscar winner Hollywood star Julia Roberts (Pretty Woman), as per media reports. Reports, quoting sources in India government, point out that the plan is an international ad drive promoting India as the land of yoga with Roberts as its face. About 745 million people worldwide reportedly practice yoga and Indian government wants to persuade them to indulge in it in its country of birth.
US-based Hindu religious leader Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada, welcomed the idea of projecting Roberts as the face of yoga in India campaign as in 2010 she reportedly confessed of being a “practicing Hindu” who went to the temple to “chant and pray and celebrate” and she prescribed yoga to others.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, said that Roberts might be the right candidate for such a campaign for her reportedly unwavering devotion to Hinduism and her endorsing Hinduism in a way no Hollywood celebrity seemed to have done in the past. She reportedly found India “spiritually healing” and her visit to India in the past was “a spiritually enlightening experience” for her.
Roberts also reportedly stated in the past that (Hindu festival) “Diwali should be celebrated unanimously throughout the world as a gesture of goodwill”. Some reports in the Indian media in the past suggested that she was planning to buy a house in India near one of Hinduism’s holy cities, thus becoming first Hollywood star to do so.
She also reportedly stated that she shared a common aspect of finding peace and tranquility of mind in Hinduism similar to Patsy of The Razor’s Edge by Somerset Maugham. In her interviews to Indian media in the past, she was quoted as saying: “I’ve received real spiritual satisfaction through Hinduism”.
Moreover, Roberts reportedly had been interested in yoga for quite some time. She was in Haryana (India) in September 2009 to shoot “Eat, Pray, Love” in an ashram (retreat). In January 2009, she sported a “bindi” (vermillion mark on forehead) during her trip to India when she also visited Taj Mahal with husband Danny Moder.
She has a production company called “Red Om Films”, and “Om” in Hinduism is the mystical syllable containing the universe. In 2013, Roberts reportedly urged renowned singer-songwriter Taylor Swift to “try yoga to tone her body, calm her mind and help manage stress”.
Yoga, referred as “a living fossil”, was a mental and physical discipline for everybody to share and benefit from, whose traces went back to around 2,000 BCE to Indus Valley civilization, Rajan Zed pointed out.
Julia Fiona Roberts, 48, one of the most successful Hollywood actresses besides a producer and fashion model, has won best actress Oscar for “Erin Brockovich” and earned Oscar nominations for “Osage County”, “Pretty Woman” and “Steel Magnolias”.